The hybrid rice research achievements of Yuan Longping, the scientist internationally regarded as the "father of hybrid rice," rewrote the history of rice growing in China in the second half of the 20th century. In 2003, Yuan Longping made a breakthrough in bilinear hybrid rice research. In two small demonstration fields, the per-hectare yield of super-class hybrid rice reached 12,112 kilograms and 12,261 kilograms. At present this super-class hybrid rice is being popularized on a large scale. Yuan Longping's new goal is to produce super-class hybrid rice with a yield in excess of 13,500 kilograms per hectare before 2010.
More than 30 fruits of science and technology won a 2005 National Science and Technology Award. These included the "research and application of the inactivated H5 subtype avian influenza vaccine" project, which won the National Science & Technology Progress Award (first class), and successfully developed China's and indeed the world's first H5 subtype highly pathogenic avian influenza vaccine. The vaccine was applied in emergency avian flu prevention across China and played a crucial role in efficient and speedy epidemic control.
Government programs play a significant role in improving sci-tech knowledge among farmers by bringing advanced sci-tech achievements to the countryside and to every rural household; examples include the Spark Program, the Promotion of Important Achievements Plan, the Bumper Harvest Plan, and the Prairie Fire Program, all of them directly promoting economic construction in rural areas.